Equine Dentist Dorit Brown

History

Now why do horses have these issues, wild horses thousands of years ago didn't need dental care, right?

There are two very simple reasons, why todays horses do need proper dental care:

  1. Feed: Wild horses thousands of years ago spent their whole dayeating tough, long, low energy grass and branches from bushes. Today’s horses are most often fed grasses that are bred for cows – short, soft high energy grasses as well as hay and grains. All of them do not require as much chewing. This change in diet results in less time and jaw movement spent chewing and properly grinding down their teeth causing sharp edges.
  2. Breeding: Ancient horses were breed by nature, a stallion with bad teeth would not be as healthy and so bred less likely than a stallion with great teeth. Most of today´s horses are selected for breeding by humans to have fine Arabian influenced heads providing less space for the teeth. It takes tens of thousands of years for the teeth to adjust to this smaller space inside the horses head. So today´s horses jaws most often do not allow the horse to properly grind down its teeth.